What You Think About When You Think About Your First Book

So here’s me, in my brain, when I get a box of books that are my books. My first book. Of poetry.

How many are there? (Count them. Forty–40–like it’s supposed to be.)

Wonder why the dog didn’t bark at the delivery guy. Crazy dog.

So that’s it. That’s all there is. Some paper in a brown box. All that work, for some paper.

You know, that is a nice cover, a fine cover, a slick cover. Good choosing, you. I mean self.

Shit. What if it sucks? What if the poems suck? The poems suck. Gulp.

On second thought, maybe the cover is bad. Terrible. Laughable. What’s worse than laughable? Nothing! Just a big horse’s ass swimming though some water.

Man, people are gonna laugh at you, dude.

You’re too old to call yourself dude.

Forty books. Forty.

Now please do not cry. Yes, Dear Departed Mother would be proud. She’s probably up on top of a big fat white cloud, wearing gold sandals, lighting up a Pall Mall (hey, that’s where heavenly clouds come from–all those dead smokers–file that in idea for a poem, ha!) and gazing at you with misty eyes.

Suck it up. Be a man. Get it together. There’s no crying in poetry.


This has been your life dream! This will last forever! You got a legacy, dude!

Oh no, don’t cry. Don’t cry, you wuss. It’s just a book. You’re just lucky, not talented. Not a hard worker. Definitely not a hard worker. You just won the lottery, man.

Shape up. Here comes your wife.

Did she just say “Where’s the horse’s ass book?”

That might sound mean to some, but it’s the perfect thing to say to get you out of your whirpool of self-worry. That’s why you married her.

That, and she’s pretty cute.

I got your horse’s ass right here.


7 thoughts on “What You Think About When You Think About Your First Book

  1. Dude–there are no age, gender, ethnic or religious limitations on the word ‘dude.’ Especially when it’s self inflicted.

  2. Congratulations, my guy! I didn’t mean what i said about the horse’s ass — I love the cover and the book and the dedication and the poems.


  3. Nothing quite like seeing your own name on the cover of a book … and knowing that you didn’t write it there in Sharpie.


  4. I saw a copy of my book last night. Roger W. had ordered it offa Amazon and brought it over to my house. First thing I did was turn to the back cover and think “why the hell did I choose such a doofus author photo??”

    Next thing I did was go on Amazon and order myself a copy, along with a copy of the horse’s ass book, and a comic book.

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